INSP has been asking vendors from across the street paper network to write letters to their 25-year-old self to mark the end of INSP’s 25th anniversary year. Kralji Ulice vendor Taubi (53), gives his younger self a properly good going over for some of his youthful exuberance and, what he believes, is careless behaviour in this frank missive.
My dear Taubi,
I know you hate it when I call you my dear but over the years you’ll get used to it. You will get used to being addressed formally and at the same time be running away from it. You will get used to being respected by some. Don’t ask me why. This is probably your life mileage. It’s probably… Well, after all these years, I still don’t know why. But that’s how it is. I also know that you will never regret all the crap you do at this moment. You could at least calm down a bit occasionally.
Remember that pizza place you broke into a month ago and baked yourself a pizza and poured beer like a hotshot? And then in the middle of the night waited alone at the bar for pizza to be ready. Well, were you a hotshot? No! You were a jerk. You must’ve been too high to realize there was a cop only sixty feet away who heard you smashing a glass door. The school of hard knocks. But now, after all those years, I’ll tell you that this has not caught up with you. You will keep repeating such nonsense. But I will not spout. I know you’ll just be pissed off and throw this letter in the trash.
What about last night’s needle in the park, do you even remember? Probably not, you were so damn stoned. I’m not going to tell you that you should stop doing drugs. No. You’ll get it in a few years’ time. Question is, why was that needle so important to you since you were already buzzed? Taubi, you’re a jackass. You know the price of one shot very well. What a waste of money. You’re just throwing it in your veins. And you’re not Chuck Norris, able to survive it all. Oh, I’m sorry. You don’t know Chuck Norris yet because he’s not a star at this point. He’s still training hard, poor guy. Let’s rather go back to that needle of yours. You were in such a rush that you left the dirty needle on the floor in front of the bench. What if a kid found it and got pricked on it? No, you didn’t think about that, because you could hardly think at all. And if he got infected? Hepatitis? HIV? AIDS? Don’t know about them? Well, you will soon, but some divine force will love you so much you won’t get personal with any of them. Even though you don’t give a shit about anything and especially not about yourself.
What did you eat yesterday Taubi? What are you going to eat today? Will you be surfing the trashcans again? Will you be wandering around the city gardens? Go ahead. Don’t be hungry. However, this will change over time. The time will come when you’ll have your own room and you will not be sleeping on benches in parks or in cellars anymore. You will have your own food. And I know, now you’re going to say I’m crazy. But I’m not. Just persist. And don’t think about suicide anymore, because you’ll never be successful at it. Instead try remembering every moment of your shitty life. Every stupid thing you’ve done – especially the hardest – and every beautiful moment.
Do you remember your girlfriend? You would do anything for her. No? Did drugs and alcohol devour your brain? No worries, this is just a momentary oblivion. She’ll occupy your head again in years to come. I know I’m already getting on your nerves but I’m trying to be as unobtrusive as I can, because I know you get pissed off at every moral lesson you hear. And so will you still when you reach my age.
In the end just give it a go and enjoy your youth as much as you can, since you will no longer be able to do it at old age. There’s something else. I know that with this write-up I’ve been eating away your brain, but I’m not tired yet. You’ll go to prison shortly. Be smart. I know very well who you are because I was with you at that time. Really, I was in you, I was you. Don’t act out behind bars. Be quiet and obedient, you’ll make it easier for yourself. Although I know that you are reading this letter superficially and you are calling me an idiot, I do ask you to take it into account at least a bit. I just got out of prison recently and it was a completely different experience from your time inside. Well, times are changing. However, foolish actions teach you good and hard life lessons. You will only get to realize this later. Trust me, Taubi.
Your trusted descendant.
P.S. If you’ve got balls, save this letter and read it again when you are fifty years old. For you will lose everything in your life but keep this letter as your own eyes.
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